Eneos to open demo plant to create MCH liquid organic hydrogen carrier in Australia

ENEOS Corporation’s low-cost electrochemical synthesis of organic hydride technique Direct MCH is used to generate methylcyclohexane (MCH), a liquid organic hydrogen carrier (LOHC), in a demonstration unit in Brisbane, Australia. The plant opens this month.

Hydrogen and toluene combine to form liquid hydrogen carrier methylcyclohexane (MCH). MCH has over 500 times more hydrogen per volume than hydrogen gas. MCH may be transported and used in petroleum infrastructure at ambient temperature and pressure. Toluene can generate MCH again after dehydrogenation. Toluene and MCH are poisonous.

Direct MCH from Eneos is made by electrolyzing water. The anode catalyst oxidizes water into oxygen, protons, and electrons. Protons pass through the ion exchange membrane to the cathode, where they react with toluene and electrons from the external circuit on the catalyst to form MCH.

Current density (response rate) and reaction selectivity are essential performance measures in this process (Faraday efficiency). Improved performance allows a small electrolyzer to produce a lot of MCH, lowering equipment and hydrogen expenses.

ENEOS scaled Direct MCH electrolyzers to mass-produce MCH from renewable energy (Green MCH). This project includes demonstration plant operation.

The 150-kilowatt-scale medium-sized electrolyzer, which ENEOS recently developed, has stacked electrodes with a surface area of 3 m2. With virtually the largest industrial electrodes, the electrolyzer increases MCH production efficiency.

The medium-sized electrolyzer and a 250-kilowatt solar power system in Queensland, perfect for solar power generation, will manufacture green MCH at the demonstration facility.

The plant will test the electrolyzer’s endurance under subtropical circumstances and create optimal operation and control technologies for it when plant operation is adjusted to match solar power fluctuations from February to September 2023 to maximize output efficiency.

ENEOS’ Central Technical Research Laboratory will extract hydrogen from MCH for 400 to 600 fuel cell vehicles (FCVs) throughout the demonstration period.

This demonstration plant will help ENEOS construct a 5 megawatt-scale electrolyzer for commercialization by FY2025.

ENEOS will develop reliable and cost-competitive CO2-free hydrogen (green hydrogen) generation technology in Australia, which has good climate conditions, including wind and sunlight, and abundant land.

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